1998 Single Cask Bottled Exclusively for Vintages (LCBO)
From the distiller BenRiach:
BenRiach Distillery has unveiled Batch 15 in its popular series of single cask bottling’s. The distillery is known for its experimental nature and this latest batch of single cask whiskies demonstrates this, once again offering whisky connoisseurs a multi-faceted range of casks in both unpeated and Highland peated styles. Each bottle is filled exclusively from one of these individual casks.
As with all of the BenRiach single cask releases they are individually hand-numbered, non chill filtered, natural colour and presented in a gift tube, each single cask is truly unique.
BenRiach 2006 Single Cask
Cask No. 2406
Cask Type: Port Pipe
Bottle No. 327 of 809
Cask Strength 58.7 % ABV
Colour: darker gold, almost a bronze
Nose: Toffee, butterscotch, sweet heat, cherries, dried figs, you can really smell the strength of the alcohol, but it is rounded out nicely by the sweetness and warmth of fruit
Taste: figs, raisins, bit of liquorice, sweet warmth of some fresh baking, a little touch of spice, berries, the alcohol dissipates quickly and does not over-power the palate
Finish: smooth sweetness, Christmas pudding, caramel sauce, warmth
This dram invokes a sense of déjà vu and transports me back to the onset of a brisk Ontario winter right around the Christmas holidays. My Grandmother makes a Christmas pudding with caramel sauce, which invokes the smell an aroma that I get from this dram. The sweetness, the fruit, the caramel sauce, all that’s missing is some vanilla ice cream, but hey why not drizzle a bit of this BenRiach Single Cask onto a fresh scoop? The Port Pipe Cask is a fantastic finish on some top notch juice in this expression. Highly recommend should you come across a bottle. Not available in Ontario via the LCBO but it can be found out of province.
BenRiach 2006 Single Cask
Cask No. 1855
Cask Type: Sauternes Barrique
Bottle No. 184 of 277
Cask Strength 56.5% ABV
Colour: Bright summer gold, bit more of a lighter red hue vs the Port Pipe expression
Nose: hint of lemon, subtle honey, toast, freshness, toffee, apple, smells almost dry like a cider
Taste: green apple slices, hazelnut, drizzle of Billie Bee honey on morning toast, dry sweet wine from the Sauternes Cask finish, overall brightness
Finish: smooth light dry finish, much more delicate that the Cask Strength would suggest, fresh cut green apples, touch of honey sweetness
This dram is completely different from the Part Pipe finish. The Sauternes Cask is a much smaller finishing vessel and it imparts the dry sweetness that the Sauternes region wine is known for. This one is more fresh and uplifting and I would be right at home drinking this one on a warm summer evening. I keep coming back to the dry finish of a glass of cider, however one with a much warmer finish as dictated by the Cask Strength finish. It’s hard to believe that these 2 BenRiach’s are the same distillate as they impart completely different flavours and finishes based on the Cask treatment. Once again this was not available at the LCBO and had to be sourced out of province. Should you come across one I’d say investigate an purchase should budgets allow. Overall fantastic work with these expressions BenRiach.